I signed up awhile back, but only as a placeholder — at the moment, I can’t conceive of any reason to actually use it. In fact, the only “tweet” that appears on my Twitter feed announces exactly that: just a placeholder. Still, I must get a dozen or so emails a week announcing that somebody has signed up for my Twitter feed! One came in last week from a friend I haven’t spoken to in awhile, and I sent him an email asking “Why?”
“Heck if I know,” was his reply.
But according to the New York Times this morning, tweeting is all the rage among media professionals:
Like bankers who never feel theyâ€™ve earned enough, television anchors and correspondents apparently never feel that they have communicated enough. â€œHeading upstairs to the studio,â€ Norah Oâ€™Donnell of NBC tweeted to her followers (who at that moment, 3:04 p.m. on Wednesday, numbered 1,509).
This is what I genuinely don’t understand: Norah O’Donnell spends her life in front of cameras, broadcasting to hundreds of thousands, if not millions, of people. Why in god’s name is it important to her to send out “tweets” to an additonal 1,509 voyeurs?
And why do any of those people care that at 3:04 p.m. on Wednesday she is “Heading upstairs to the studio.” Seriously — why in god’s name would anyone care what anyone is doing to that degree of minute specificity?
For awhile I thought it might be fun to start sending out tweets every few minutes, about my most banal activities. Brushed my teeth! Took a shit! Checked my email! Sending out a tweet! Except that seems to be pretty much what people are actually doing. Satire has to surpass reality, not simply reflect it.
Well, I’m off to the gym. And then I’ll probably take a shower. Haven’t decided what I’m doing this afternoon, but I’ll let you know!